When Garp begins the ninth grade, Jenny decides to sign him up for wrestling and she meets the wrestling coach and her daughter Helen when she examines the wrestling room. When Jenny tells Garp about that interaction, Garp seems to develop a keen interest about Helen.
One day after Garp and Helen become friends, Garp asks her if she would marry a writer. When Helen tells him that she would, Garp decides that writing will be his career
Once Garp graduates from the Steerling School he has a small amount of writing experience. However, Helen tells him that he and Jenny should go to Europe so Garp can learn how to write and they gladly accept the recommendation.
After staying at various pensions throughout Vienna, Garp and Jenny eventually settle in an apartment in the city and Jenny spends most of her time inside furiously writing her autobiography while Garp tries to absorb his surroundings to ease his writer's block.
After several months, Jenny has already written 600 pages of her autobiography while Garp has only started his short story. However, Garp makes a breakthrough for writing his story after visiting the Vienna museum and starts to make significant progress on his book.
Before Jenny and Garp fly back home, Jenny sends Helen a copy of her autobiography, A Sexual Suspect, and Helen forwards this to a publisher named John Wolf. Meanwhile, Garp also sends Helen a copy of his short story, "The Pension Grillparzer", to show his seriousness about marrying her.